gondry retrospective for lunch
One of the creative teams has been sponsoring a creative lunch hour to show director reels. They started with Michel Gondry - an assortment of Bjork videos, a multi-layered Kylie, splashes of Daft Punk and the Foo Fighters. A crazy Levi’s ad and The Letter, a sweet short film.
Seeing his body of work as a whole instead of in bits and pieces unsurfaced a few quirks that played across the different videos - to desconstruct and reconstruct in unnatural & unusual ways, to use items as markers throughout one material from which he jumps forward, backward, inward and outward. He is certainly drugs.
What was most striking about his work was that it made me feel like I absolutely could not look down, even for a second, or I might miss something. I didn’t want to text or try to slice up my lunch (fried chicken) because the action never stops! Sometimes you want to keep up with the narrative but sometimes you get lured into a semi-hypnotic state of patterned action (see below). This is especially relevant for people like me who can’t do anything - meetings, TV shows, dinner - without reverting to phone or ipod every few minutes to go online or open a game app. Digital=A.D.D. :S I’m doomed. But with artists like Gondry, there is hope!
My favorite piece was Chemical Brothers’ Star Guitar, which reads like a visual sheet of music. Instead of notes on a staff he has houses, telephone poles, trains, storefront windows running on a train track. Two distant houses for two beats, four closer-together telephone poles for four quick beats. Like a visualized Guitar Hero.